Investment Strategy
We seek to pick winning funds with superior management and quantitative characteristics linked to strong performance. Our quantitative research uses the most comprehensive mutual fund database in the world to determine the best strategies for long-term investing success. We then supplement those studies with extensive qualitative research of portfolio managers, analysts, and traders through onsite visits and follow-up phone calls.
 
About the Editor
Russel Kinnel is director of manager research for Morningstar, Inc. and editor of Morningstar FundInvestor, a monthly print newsletter for individual investors. He also writes the Fund Spy column for Morningstar.com, the company's investment Web site.

Since joining the company in 1994, Kinnel has covered the Fidelity, Janus, T. Rowe Price, and Vanguard mutual fund families. He helped develop the new Morningstar Rating for funds and the new Morningstar Style Box methodology. He also is co-author of the company's first book, The Morningstar Guide to Mutual Funds: 5-Star Strategies for Success, which was published in January 2003.

 
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About Russel Russ' Photo
Russel Kinnel,
Director of Manager Research and Editor, Morningstar FundInvestor
Russel Kinnel is director of manager research for Morningstar, Inc. and editor of Morningstar FundInvestor, a monthly print newsletter for individual investors.
Featured Posts
T. Rowe Price Fund Upgraded

An Upgrade for T. Rowe Price New America Growth
We have upgraded T. Rowe Price New America Growth PRWAX to a Morningstar Analyst Rating of Silver from Bronze. Here's Katie Reichart's take:

T. Rowe Price New America Growth’s manager has effectively implemented his process. Its Morningstar Analyst Rating is upgraded to Silver from Bronze.

Justin White has adapted well to his first management charge, which he has run since April 2016. His framework is similar to when he successfully covered telecom and technology-related companies as an analyst, a period where his picks for the firm’s analyst-run strategy outperformed stocks in the broader S&P 500 sectors he covered. At a high level, he considers quality, valuation, how T. Rowe Price's expectations differ from Wall Street's, and whether firms' prospects are getting better or worse. Holdings don't need to pass on all four measures but may be bigger positions if they have more of those factors working in their favor.

The approach has dovetailed nicely with the strengths of T. Rowe’s analyst bench, which White has effectively leveraged. He’s collaborated with global colleagues on a handful of holdings, including Essity and Samsung, but at the same time has made his own judgment calls, even when his opinion differs from the analysts’ buy and sell ratings, showing independent thinking.

The strategy’s reasonable $5.1 billion asset base affords White a flexibility that T. Rowe’s bigger large-growth offerings don’t have. The portfolio held 20% of assets in mid-caps as of June 2019, and White has ventured beyond the growth border for picks that meet his framework, such as Fortune Brands Home & Security FBHS. The portfolio’s size arguably makes it easier for him to tactically adjust the portfolio on the edges; as the economy has slowed in 2019, he’s embraced growth-at-a-reasonable price stocks such as Comcast CMCSA.

This approach, along with strong stock-picking across most sectors, have led to strong performance. The fund has beaten its Russell 1000 Growth Index benchmark by 1.7 percentage points annualized on White’s watch through August 2019. It also held up slightly better in 2018's fourth-quarter sell-off and retains an edge on a risk-adjusted basis.

Should You Invest a Lump Sum Rather Than Average In?
Nick Maggiulli has the answer here.

When Advisors Give Bad Advice and Worse
John Rekenthaler looks at some bad stuff that has happened to investors.

How the Big Fund Companies Stack Up
Bridget Hughes takes a look here.

Watch Out for Useless Health Insurance
This comes from Bloomberg.

Budget Deficit Hits $1 Trillion for 2019
Also from Bloomberg, the deficit is surging.

 

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